Plant Science at The University of Nottingham

12508877_10154876020254572_2297778943920431937_nThe Plant and Crop science department at the University of Nottingham is a growing department well known for its top class research. For those of you interested in coming to this year’s EPSR held in Nottingham we wanted to give you an insight into plant science here.  

A college has existed in Nottingham since 1881 but it was in 1948 that the college received its Royal Charter and the University of Nottingham was created. In the same year the Midland College of Agriculture, based 10 miles south of the main campus, merged with the University and the Sutton Bonington Campus sprung into existence. The college of Agriculture had an interesting history before joining the university. During the 1st World War it was taken over by the government to act as a prisoners of war camp. However, don’t let this put you off! The campus no longer resembles a prison but consists of many modern buildings set in the beautiful English countryside. The schools of Veterinary Science and Bioscience are based at Sutton Bonington. It is in this rural location that the Plant and Crop Science division is based.  

56702388_646574732456001_1824175844445126656_nThe department has been based in its current location since 200_, spread across two buildings to accommodate our many research groups. The Plant Sciences building has a large open plan office and lab. In the summer you will find us PhD students having lunch and enjoying the English sun in some of the lovely outside spaces on campus. The current head of department is Malcom Bennett who will give you an introduction to the department on the first morning of the EPSR. 

We have many excellent research groups here working on ground breaking research. Here is an example of just some of the work we do here: 

  • At Nottingham we have a particularly abundant group of scientists obsessed with 57286237_418590185358905_171667368919957504_nthe ‘hidden half’ of plants, the roots! This stretches from the molecular control of root anatomy (see @Bishopp_lab) to whole root phenotyping in our state-of-the-art X-ray computed tomography facility (@UoNHounsfield). 
  • Crops-wise Nottingham BBSRC Wheat Research Centre (@Notts_WRC) is a world leader in transferring genetic variation from wild related species into wheat. We also have world class agronomy and crop physiology research from the likes of Professor Debbie Sparkes (@DebbieSparkes) and Professor Erik Murchie (@ErikMurchie) 
  • We are lucky enough to have Professor Martin Broadly (@martinbroadley) based in Nottingham who has recently won the Innovator of the Year award in recognition of his research into solving the hidden hunger of micronutrient deficiencies 
  • Multiple groups look at stress responses including expert Professor Michael Holdsworth (@N_end_rules) 
  • A brand-new initiative at Nottingham is the Future Food Beacon (@UoNFutureFood). This multi-disciplinary team consists of researchers working from soil to plate to address the challenge of feeding a growing population. 
  • Also based within our department is the Nottingham Arabidopsis Stock Centre (NASC), which provides seed and resources to centres across Europe (@NascArabidopsis). 

Check out the university website to see all the researchers based at Nottingham. 

The location of the EPSR this year is University Park, the main campus for the University of Nottingham. However, if you have been inspired to come to Sutton Bonington by this post then you can get a free hopper bus from University Park to Sutton Bonington during your visit. We hope this has provided a useful insight into Plant Science here and you will join us on the 8th– 10th July at the EPSR!